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Near-Wall Focusing of Phase Change Micro-Particles for Local Heat Transfer Enhancement

[+] Author Affiliations
Andrej Lenert, Youngsuk Nam, Matthew W. Thoms, Evelyn N. Wang

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

Bekir S. Yilbas

King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dharhan, Saudi Arabia

Paper No. IMECE2011-64517, pp. 619-626; 8 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 10: Heat and Mass Transport Processes, Parts A and B
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, November 11–17, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5496-9
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


We report the effect of confining micron-sized phase-change particles to a layer near the heated wall of a parallel plate channel. We developed a numerical model which assumes fully-developed laminar flow and a constant heat flux applied to one wall. Melting of the confined phase-change particles is incorporated in the model using a spatially-dependent and temperature-dependent effective heat capacity. We investigated the effect of channel height, height of the phase-change particle layer, heat flux, and fluid properties on the peak local Nusselt number (Nu* ) and the averaged Nusselt number over the melting length (Numelt ). Compared to the base Nusselt number for this geometry (Nuo = 5.385), Numelt and Nu* enhancements were determined to be as high as 15% and 45%, respectively. For a constant mass fraction of particles in the phase-change layer, Numelt is optimized when the phase-change particles are confined to within 35% of the channel width. These studies suggest a strategy to enhance heat transfer with phase change particles for various thermal-fluidic systems.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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